I CANNOT BELIEVE TODAY IS THE LAST DAY!
HERE ARE THE HIGHLIGHTS OF THE CLOSING GALA OF PERTH FASHION FESTIVAL FEATURING THE 25TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE WHEELS & DOLLBABY COLLECTION. IT WAS A BLAST---AN EVENING I WILL FOREVER REMEMBER TO MY DYING DAY AS I WAS HONOURED BY JAMILA SAVOY, SAMANTHA BREMNER AND JENNIFER KEEN WHO WENT TO ALL THE EXPENSE AND EFFORT TO PRINT T-SHIRTS WITH MY IMAGE ON THEM! THIS WAS MY PERSONAL HIGHLIGHT OF THE 13TH PERTH FASHION FESTIVAL WHICH ALSO INCLUDES ALL THE MOVERS AND SHAKERS OF THE ORGANISING COMMITTEE AND MY NEW FRIENDS IN PERTH!
I thought I was dreaming when these 3 lovely damsels flashed their jackets to expose my full length image!
I took another photo to prove I was not hallucinating and Jamila, Samantha and Jennifer were still wearing my image on their bosoms!
I could scarcely believe my eyes when I saw my image smirking from the breasts of Jamila, Samantha and Jeniffer! See my tongue drooling and hanging out from my pink pants?
This is definitely the greatest honour bestowed on me since the Sultan of Kelantan awarded me the Sri Kelantan title! I am so touched and overwhelmed these ladies too the time, effort and expense to customise their blouses with my image taken on my first day at Myer Lunch at Perth Convention Centre!
Kee Hua Chee with billionairess (in ringgit as she is worth RM 1.3 billion) Rhonda Wyllie, wife of the late Bill Wyllie who lived in Malaysia in his 20s and went on to build Hutchinson Whampoa and myriad other companies.
Rhonda said her son took a photo with me earlier and showed her and both agreed Perth needed more colourful characters.
Kee Hua Chee, Rhonda Wyllie and blonde who picked up one of my feathers as I was moulting like a real bird...soon I would be like a plucked chicken at the rate I was going
Suoer-duper rich couple Tony Sage and Rhonda Wyllie---each is worth over a billion ringgit!
This gorgeous blonde with Chanel watch and diamonds picked up one of my feathers from the floor as I was moulting and perched it on billionaire Tony Sage's ears
A touch of red only enhanced Tony Sage's charisma
Mariella Harvey-Hanrahan consulting Tony Sage as he did a Kee Hua Chee
Blonde beauty Rhonda Wyllie
Director and founder of Perth Fashion Festival 13 years ago Mariella Harvey-Hanrahan with husband Paul Harvey. She is in Wheels & Dollbaby and he in vintage but unworn 1980s Perfecto jacket
Well, they did say birds of the same feather flock together though not necessarily of the same colour
Kee Hua Chee in full plumage
Kee Hua Chee as a bird of paradise. Note his cock ring from which the poor bird was de-feathered
On a wing and prayer
My Lego belt buckle also received attention
The magnificent staircase of His Majesty Theatre had never looked gaudier or more feathery
Di Bauwens in Wheels & Dollbaby and Kee Hua Chee in feathers
The most important couple in Western Australia; Di Bauwens and Matt Jelonek. She writes the social column for The West Australian and he takes the photos! But since he is so tall and handsome he will be working as model soon
Jennifer Keen, Kee Hua Chee and Samantha Bremner wearing the super exclusive Kee Hua Chee Collection that consists of only 3 pieces
These flashers are legit!
Now all they need do is print my face on their pants!
Two rock birds in matching colours
Kee Hua Chee and top stylist and producer Amber Rae
No, she is not Nicole Kidman but supermodel Tiah Eckhardt. I asked if Tiah was her real name as I have never heard of anyone named Tiah which could be Chinese. She told me she was named after a witch in a Disney movie would you believe. Well, Tiah can certainly cast spells come to think of it.
Her penetrating gaze can bring strong men to their knees I am told. Lucky she had no effect on me as I was still standing.
Tiah in the 25th anniversary T
The ultra delicious Kee Sandwich
I was told by all the girls this Italian stallion Greg Naso's hair smelled fabulous so being a journalist I had to test and now could verify it was true. I have smelled hair that was nicer but Greg's hair was not to be sniffed at, if you know what I mean
The reason he was holding a Bunkers wine bottle is that he was from Bunkers, the drinks sponsor of the evening
Just in case you missed the bottle
Amy Calneggia marketing manager of Bunkers wines from Margaret River with Kee Hua Chee
The champagne flute hardly left my hands during Perth Fashion Festival
THE GUESTS OF THE WHEELS AND DOLLBABY 25TH ANNIVERSARY SHOW AT HIS MAJESTY THEATRE
First rollcall are the Leopard Ladies as many wore this animal print and they are not to be mistaken for the Cougar Ladies which is another breed altogether! All the eye-catching leopard print outfits were by Wheels & Dollbaby which has been producing them all these years and some of the Leoprad Ladies told me their attire were from past seasons but of course they never go out of style, just like me!
Simone Sheffron and Estefania Ferreyra were the first Leopard Ladies I, er, spotted.
Feline beauty and I got 2 for the price of 1 click
When you were in spots, you get spotted by TV interviewer
Three leopardesses getting their tickets
I turned them around so you can admire their cleavages
I accosted these leopardesses at the Bar
And they asked me to join them for a drink
In case you didn't notice, my faces were on my shoes too
The lady at left assured me her knickers were leopard and so qualified to be photographed
The lady at right declared her leopard spots were of the modern, sci-fi variety
Kee Hua Chee the avian and she the fauna
Conqueror of sky and land, that was what we were
Don't you love it when they looked like they were about to burst out any minute? I waited all night but they stayed put though the struggle they made to escape their confines was remarkable
This leopard loved an oriental tom-cat
What a seductress and many agreed with me
But not for long as this feline took a snooze or blinked at the wrong moment
The late and great Amy Winehouse was a fan of Wheels & Dollbaby
Some spots were bigger than others
Some hand carried their spots while most wore them
I loved her jacket and she said she bought it a year ago
What a pussycat doll!
She was the sexiest kitten of the lot
Of course she could not bend down to pick her fallen car keys but plenty of men would do that for her
The mother looked wilder than her oh-so-sweet-sixteen daughter
Both wore Wheels & Dollbaby which caters to all ages
I took this picture in the Upper Circle after the show but the ones above were taken on the pavement outside the theatre
Leopards do bring out the animal in me
Why need animal power when their cleavages will bring out the beast in any man?
Just ask fellow Malaysian James Tee, president of First International Merchant Bank
Hiroto Chan runs a chain of pharmacies
I am never good at taking photos using my arm
Josh McGinnity, Kee Hua Chee and Josh's gf Samantha Evans
Why is she resisting such a handsome young model like Josh?
Josh McGinnity is so easy on the eye
And he has a great set of gnashers
Girls always liked to cuddle each other
This one preferred to undress a bit
Elo, that was my feather peeking provocatively from her breast
There is another of my feathers on the floor but how it got there I will never know as I was nowhere near this area!
I must say I eclipsed her a bit by covering her boobs
This girl got much attention by just walking
This guy got attention by just standing
They are getting married as he introduced me to his gf's parents
Beauties in black
Beauty in red and pink
Preening like a peacock
I have fine tuned it to an artform
A yellow Red Indian?
It is not easy to ruffle my feathers
Such a grand staircase was meant for grandoise poses
Read what thewest.com.au wrote about me
What The West Australian wrote about me was not as bad as feared so my prayers were answered
I haven't seen this gesture in years
She is a doll and it says so near her boob
I loved her tail!
This chick was fluttering around so I shot her with my Leica
In Wheel & Dollbaby. This was a best seller as I saw many wearing this
The hottie and the cutie
Everyone could see my image on their bosoms
Jennifer Keen and Samantha Bremner wearing Kee Hua Chee at work
Flashing Kee Hua Chee!
Hmm judging by the degrees my face was compressed, Jennifer's are bigger than Samantha's!
You can see 4 Kee Hua Chees here
Rhonda Wyllie and friend arriving at His Majesty Theatre
Tony Sage and 2 hotties
Celebrity stylista and fashionista Amber Rae
He is half-Burmese, no wonder he looked so exotic
They were pure Aussies but very exotic too for very obvious reasons
I am also very fond of zebras
The guy is a famous musician
Hunks and hotties are what everyone likes
Three enchanting ladies
Di Bauwens, a Dollbaby (says so on her lapel) and Pip Christmass and yes, that is her real name
These ladies sat on my left and the one nearest me is a scientist
Leaving the theatre
Exotic, erotic and expensive, that's what we are!
The fabulous couple who wore matching outfits! I love their attire and attitude
As it was not snowing, I asked them to remove their jackets
I held their jackets
I also asked them to remove their shirts but they politely decline
AT THE AFTER-PARTY AT WOLFE LANE CLUB AT WOLFE LANE
Top designer Melanie Greensmith is almost as tall as supermodel Nicole Trunfio which meant she was really tall in real life
Mel Greensmith and Nicole Trunfio
Tiah in her 25th anniversary T
Looking mystical is easy for Tiah
The lovely lady in the middle is Lucy Sage, wife of tycoon Tony Sage
Nelson Woss and Tiah huddled in discussion. He owns Red Dog the film production company but I noticed he did not offer me any movie contract, sad to say.
Bet supermodel Nicole Trunfio is used to men at her feet
And on their knees
Nicole's earrings are from her own new jewellery collection named Eight and A Half which was launched in the middle of September in New York
Note her ring. I adore it though it is a wee bit too small for my taste
Discussing a stint at being a deejay
Nicole Trunfio started spinning as the deejay calmed his nerves with a beer
Nicole was all engrossed
The men who saw her became engrossed too
Cosmetic surgen Dr Shahid Jamil and Sean Parekh
Dr Shahid Jamil, Tony Sage and Sean Parekh
The 4 hunks; Dr Shahid, Sam Wallwork, Tim Gregg and Josh Stowers
This hunk looks like a model or movie star but works as business development manager for Dr Shahid though his looks are natural!
Their looks and ample assets were natural too
See for yourself
Tiah seemed distracted
From our VIP enclosure we could see the peasants struggling below
Nicole and Sam were not struggling though
Holly Brown who sells mining equipment with bf Sam Barnett, son of the Premier of Western Australia Colin Barnett. Sam Barnett is the Youth Ambassador for Perth Fashion Festival so he is not just a handsome face
Linda Parri was also not just a pretty face as she writes for The Sunday Times
Glasses can maketh or breakath a woman butin this case, they made her look so adorable
This dress REALLY maketh her!
Kee Hua Chee with Pip Christmass from The West Australian. If you marry her, you can have Christmas always. Or 'Christmas comes but once a year but with her, it can come daily'!
Mariella Harvey-Hanrahan, Melanie Greensmith the designer of Wheels & Dollbaby, Katy Steele the singer from Little Birdy and supermodel Tiah
Notice Mel Greensmith is a big gal
You would put your aching feet up too if you had to organise your 25th anniversary
A touch of powder did no harm either
I could not recover from her cleavage and nose ring
So she obligingly posed to show her nostrils
From 3some to 4some
A toast from Rhonda
Were they kissing? No they were not
James Tee's penetrating gaze can mesmerise anyone, lady or leopardess.
I think she had fallen for him and no wonder
James Tee may only reach supermodel Nicole Trunfio's armpits but there was no stopping him
Now James Tee aimed for Nicole's bosom
What a handsome beastie
Touchy-feely was the norm
If they were not big, they were long
I CAME ON 20 SEPT AND FELT LIKE I WOULD BE HERE FOR AGES BUT TIME FLIES WHEN YOU ARE LAPPING IT UP AND TONIGHT IS THE LAST NIGHT OF THE 13TH PERTH FASHION FESTIVAL!
TODAY I DECIDED TO BE A CULTURE-VULTURE AND WENT TO WESTERN AUSTRALIA ART GALLERY TO VIEW 'PRINCELY TREASURES'. I WAS HERE LAST OCTOBER TO WRITE ON 'GUGGENHEIM COLLECTION' AND WAS MIGHTY IMPRESSED WITH THE MODERNIST, AVANT-GARDE PAINTINGS AND SCULPTURES BUT MY HEART IS MORE BAROQUE AND GRAND OLD MASTERS IN PALATIAL SURROUNDINGS SO 'PRINCELY TREASURES' WOULD BE MORE UP MY ALLEY.
FROM PARMELIA HILTON I SAUNTERED INTO KING ROAD AND WHAT DID MY BEADY EYE SPY BUT WHEELS & DOLLBABY BOUTIQUE WHICH I HAD SEEN EARLIER BUT DID NOT HAVE THE TIME TO VISIT. AS THEIR SHOW WAS TONIGHT I FELT BEHOLDEN TO PAY HOMAGE.
THE INTERIOR WAS PRETTILY EDGY AND REMINDED ME A BIT OF ALANNAH HILL WHICH IS ONE OF MY FAVOURITE AUSSIE DESIGNERS. THE DESIGNS WERE WONDERFUL AND THE PRICES WERE LOWER THAN EXPECTED. I ASKED IF I COULD TAKE PHOTOS AND THE MANAGER SAID 'NO'. I ASKED FOR THE PR OR MEDIA PERSON AND WAS TOLD SHE WAS NOT AVAILABLE. I SAID I DID NOT NEED SEE HER THERE AND THEN SO COULD I GET HER EMAIL WHICH WAS GRUDGINGLY GIVEN. I SAID I WAS LOOKING FORWARD TO THEIR SHOW TONIGHT AND RECEIVED A WAN SMILE. MAYBE ALL OF WA HAD ALREADY TOLD THEM THE SAME THING AND PAID $100 (RM 310) FOR TICKET.
NEARBY WAS TARVYDAS BOUTIQUE WHICH FEATURED THE KIND OF GLAM DRESSES BERNADETTE, AMBER RENAE AND I WOULD BE WEARING ALL DAY AND NIGHT IF I WERE A GIRL. NO CASUAL, OFFICE OR, GOD FORBID, SPORTS WEAR. ONLY FABULOUSLY MAGNIFICENT AND EYE-CATCHING GOWNS CREATED FOR THE RED CARPET OR CORONATIONS. EXACTLY MY KIND OF FANTASY APPAREL! I KNEW INSTINCTIVELY I WOULD BE DERAILED HERE FROM MY CULTURAL SOJOURN.
THE TWO SALES LADIES SMILED AT ME AND SAID THEY RECOGNISED ME AS I HAD BEEN IN THE PAPERS AND ON TV. THIS SOUNDED ENCOURAGING. I ASKED IF I COULD TAKE PHOTOS AND WAS GIVEN THE CUSTOMARY REPLY 'NO'.
I SIGHED BUT THEY SAID "HOWEVER, I COULD ASK MY BOSS".
THAT WAS WHAT I CALL 'INITIATIVE'.
SO SHE DID AND RANG RUTH TARVYDAS HERSELF.
She emerged from the office and said "Ruth says it is OK. In fact, when she answered my call, she was just entering a meeting with some Malaysians."
I beamed with delight. "Ask her who these Malaysians are as I know all the kosher retailers and if I have never heard of them, they are probably conmen."
I also thought it strange we poverty-stricken Malaysians from the Third World would be buying and importing Australian couture into KL. Once the Aussie dollar was $1 to RM 1.80 and now it is RM 3.10 so this was hardly the best of time since I assumed Tarvydas prices cannot be compated to Target's.
I was wrong. Very seldom am I wrong so you better start recording this. I asked if there were sales items and what were their prices. $100, I was told.
Even I could afford ten dresses at that price and seriously considered buying a dozen to sell in KL. If only our exchange rate was better it would be dirt cheap for such expensive looking and elaborate couture but even at RM 310 theses Tarvydas garments were cheaper and a far better deal than department stores. I saw some stuff at Supre and Fletcher Jones at slightly lower prices and they were nowhere near the designer standards offered by Tarvydas!
I was thoroughly impressed by Ruth Tarvydas' take on high glamour as many of her gowns were on par with Parisian couture. I saw some gowns at Monte Carlo, Monaco very similar to Tarvydas and they were around 1,200 euros (RM 5,000) whereas an apparel from a new collection averages A$ 700 (RM 2,200). I even saw the fantastic black gown worn by socialite Bernadette at the Gala Opening Night featuring Aurelio Costarella tagged at A$ 699 and I thought it cost her A$ 2,000!
I rummaged through the racks in amazement at the very realistic prices although the long gowns were between A$200 (RM 620) to A$400 (RM 1,300) range. Still cheaper than what Bernard Chandran wants us to pay.
The most expensive gown on hand cost A$ 2,200 as it was entirely hand beaded in luminous gold and fit for an empress. Many Hollywood A-listers are avid fans and the girls showed me photos of top stars wearing their dresses as proof.
As I admired the Tarvydases, what should materialise but a flute of champagne!
Said the manager, "With compliments of Ruth. I phoned her to ask who were the Malaysians but it went into voicemail."
Well, if that champagne was not a touch of class, then I do not know the meaning of the word.
I went nextdoor to Sass & Bide and received, no not champagne but the same Wheels & Dollbaby treatment. They were polite but firm so off I went to Western Australia Art Gallery only t0 discover it was closed on Tuesday! So I popped into Western Australia Museum which I had never seen in broad daylight! I had been going there 5 nights in a row so I should see it in daylight.
It was a nice museum and I loved the Argyle white and pink diamonds showcase though I was unsure if the sparklers were real since I don't think the security system was identical to Fort Knox's. I spent a happy hour before running back to Myer to meet James Tee for a quick meal.
Stephanie drove me to His Majesty Theatre at 5.30pm which was a 5-minute walk from Hilton but she said I would look grander and more superstarish to arrive in a Mercedes-Benz. True too.
I wore orange feathers on Opening Night and red feathers for Closing Night. Both my sleeves were completely feathered, with each feather hand sewn at great expense in honour of the 13th Perth Fashion Festival. I thought if my clothes could not scare the 'roos and cockatoos, nothing will.
My sartorial intention was to go over the top but by all accounts I had not only gone over the top but fell off the cliff as well!
But it was fun to see the jaws of Perthians drop as I get the same reaction in Kuala Lumpur, London, Paris, New York and Hong Kong. I really must ask KFC to sponsor me.
THE BESTESTEST HIGHLIGHT OF MY TRIP?
The 3 blouses worn by Jamila Savoy, Samantha Bremner and Jennifer Keen (I love her name as my name 'Kee' is part of 'Keen') featured a picture of me taken on the first day at Myer lunch wearing red dragon shirt with red snake pants!
Jamila, Samantha and Jennifer from Professional Public Relations proved they were world class professionals when they wore the blouses with my face and full figure under spiffy black bomber jackets and coats and they looked stupendous! Anyone wearing my face on their attire automatically look stupendous but they looked exceptionally so.
The fact they went to all the trouble, effort and expense (I doubt if the Western Australian Government paid for this) really touched the cockles of my heart and I will definitely mention their names when I accept my Nobel Prize for Peace or Literature. Or the Academy Awards.
This is the greatest tribute I have ever received and to the day I die and with my dying breath I will still remember 27th September 2011 as THE DAY MY IMAGE appeared on the bountiful bosoms of Jamila Savoy, Samantha Bremner and Jennifer Kee.
The only honour greater than this would be a knighthood or hereditary peerage bestowed by Her Britannic Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. This might take a while so these 3 ladies of Perth Fashion Festival can sleep peacefully at night, knowing they were instrumental in making my Perth visit so fantastically memorable. I was on Cloud 9 all night long and I know in future when I am down, I will think of this great honour and feel happy again!
So THANK YOU VERY MUCH, Jamila Savoy, Samatha Bremner for making this Malaysian the happiest chappy this side of the observable universe! I will write to the Governor-General and propose your three names in the Honours List for building bridges between Australia and Malaysia.
Even without these terror threesome printing my image on their blouses, I had already enjoyed my stay in Perth but with their taking a leaf from my shirts and pants painted with my faces, the 13th Perth Fashion Festival has been the BEST and most fabulous fashion week I have ever attended!
As usual, I was flattered beyond words (spoken, not written as obviously I am writing the words now as you read) when dozens of guests asked to be photographed with me. To me, posing for photos is the least I can do when someone honours me with the request. I am always mindful of people's feelings when they braced themselves to come and ask if they could take a photo with me and occasionally they seemed so pleased when I said Yes that I felt so honoured and flattered. Speaking of which, sadly I don't have a photo with Melanie Greensmith the owner-designer of Wheels & Dollbaby as I asked her and she said 'Later" and scooted off! I almost dropped my Leica!
But her show was a fitting finale and I think it was the best show so far. A case of saving the best for the last! Everything was on a grand scale as befit the spectacular His Majesty Theatre. The entire stage was the catwalk and there was a stage within the stage as Katy Steele, a bosom pal of Mel Greensmith, sang live.
The 22 models had attitude but I had altitude as my seat was on the topmost floor and I enjoyed the most panoramic, sky-high view of frocks that rocked. The 2o models overwhelmed the audience with an audacious blend of pretty dresses edged with lace and grace, think-pink floral prints, grundy gownlets, scarlet-harlot minis, cocktail/mocktail minis, babydoll whimsy frocks and retro-chic/biker chick reflective of the name Wheels & Dollbaby. Some outfits veered towards the burlesque which appealed to me as I am inordinately fond of caricature, travesty and parody! Also explains why Dita Van Teese, Queen of Burlesque, is one of Wheels & Babydoll's fans! There were leathers and I was in feathers!
The curtain proclaimed it was the 25th anniversary of Wheels & Dollbaby and since one does not become a quarter century old every other day, it was a no-holds barred event. There were 20 models but I thought they should stretch the budget to 25 models, one for each year!
Tiah Eckhardt the supermodel opened the show ala Burlesque the movie with Cher and Christina Aquilera by sitting on a rattan chair next to an old fashioned commode as she did the rituals of getting ready for a night out in a manner more strip tease than smart ease. By the time she sauntered behind the screen to change and emerge as a butterfly, the show was ready to rock!
There was a ministage atop the main stage where Little Birdy singer Kate Steele sang and Divinyls guitarist Mark McEntee performed. Mark McEntee is the husband of rock designer Melanie Greensmith so that was convenient as maybe she did not have to pay him.
After a few songs, the back curtain rose to reveal the entire line-up of 20 models. One by one, the models walked to the front, strutted and preened before forming a line each at right and left. One row featured models clad entirely in black while the opposite row had girls in coloured outfits. They exchanged places and I kept a look out for my favourite Nicole Trunfio who wore a genuine 1980s leather biker jacket owned by rocker Jimmy Barnes. Brunette bombshell Nicole seductively removed the jacket to expose her bra and high waisted pantie to elicit the oohs and aahs. Paul Harvey the husband of Mariella Harvey-Hanrahan the director of Perth Fashion Festival, also wore a genuine 1970s leather jacket. "Vintage but in pristine condition and new as never been worn. It was hanging in my friend's wardrobe in New York all these 3 decades!"
A giant screen was lowered to show the high points of Wheels & Dollbaby for the last 25 years and showed fans wearing them which included Dita, Kate Moss and my favourite singer Katy Perry.
By the time all 20 models sat on boudoir velvet or stood for the last curtain call When designer Melanie Greensmith appeared in a green dress (she was the only one in green so she would not blend with the models), she was given a resounding ovation and she well and truly deserved it. I have heard of Wheels & Dollbaby but never wore them since I don't do drag but have always liked the nifty designs.
A golden shower of confetti concluded the show which I felt was too short. Another 15 minutes would have been perfect. Or even another half hour as I was enjoying myself so much. After all, I too had my own mini-fashion show featuring blouses printed with my image and modelled by Jamila, Samantha and Jennifer, not household names lit up in neon but engraved on my heart! Drama or what...
The 25th Anniversary Closing Gala by Wheels & Dollbaby offered tickets from RM 310 upwards but the After Party was by invitation only and was the hardest to come by. So I was lucKEE to get invited. Once inside, there was free flow of Bunkers wines and champagne for the 150 fortunate souls.
All were VIPs but there was a private enclosure at the back of the bar with a bird's eye view of the peasants milling below. It could accomodate only 30 or 40 sardine style and I hovered around the entrance until Mariella Harbey-Hanrahan took pity on me and got me in. Nicole Trunflio the supermodel decided she wanted to be a deejay and entered the music console where she put on head phones and spun some albums. Well, pretty girls can get away with murder...
I scanned my beady eyes and concluded the small group of 30 were worth over RM 1 billion. Two who I knew already reached that billion ringgit mark! There was Tony Sage, slim, smiling and sexy who I met daily. He told me, "My first job is mining. Fashion is second and I also own Perth Glory, the A-league soccer team. I like all your clothes. I wouldn't wear them but I like looking at them!"
Tony Sage sold his Cape Lambert iron ore mining project to China Metallurgical Group in 2008 for RM 1.3 billion. He bought the company in 2005 for a mere RM 70 million and spent RM 160 million on exploration before selling it for a profit of over RM 1.1 billion! He also owns 49% of Perth Fashion Festival so I have to kowtow to him for all the hospitality shown to me.
Then there was the beautiful and sexier version of him and none came sexier and more alluring than socialite and charity fund raiser Rhonda Wyllie, wife of the late and great Bill Wyllie of Hong Kong fame. During his 30 years in Hong Kong, the Chinese press called him 'Smiling Tiger' and the British Press 'Dollar Bill'. Bill Wyllie cobbled together Hutchinson Whampoa for which he became world famous and stepped down in favour of Li Ka Shing who today considers Whampoa Hutchinson as his beloved flagship. Bill Wyllie was also acclaimed for building and selling Harpers International, China Engineers, Asia Securities and BSR. He died in 2006 after a long fight with cancer aged 73. He enters history as the last white taipan of Hong Kong.
I waved at Rhonda and she signalled me to sit next to her. She looked even more ravishing up close and personal. I examined her diamond earrings, diamond cuff that was 4 inch long, diamond bracelet and diamond watch, all glittering amid the perfect backdrop of blak mink and Christian Dior Couture gown. Many wore Wheels & Babydoll dresses but Rhonda Wyllie, like me, did her own stuff in Christian Dior dress, Christian Louboutin shoes and Roberto Cavalli fur.
"I know who you are because my son took a photo with you and showed it to me. We both agree Perth needs more people like you!" she smiled.
"I also know of you. I heard you are one of the richest women in Australia," I said agreeably. I love rich women and rich men in equal measure.
To my surprise and great admiration, Rhonda Wylie replied, "Yes I am."
So coolly, nonchalantly and without pretense or protest. I love it! I half expected her to demur and deny in the pathetic way some richies do which simply irritate me. If they are loaded with cash and assets, they should acknowledge their blessings bestowed on them by Jesus or Buddha as to contradict the contents of their coffers is to confront God's gift!
"$500 million I heard you are worth," I said.
"Less but not much less," she replied.
She added, "Everyone assumed my husband built his fortune in Hong Kong as he and Whampoa Hutchinson will forever be linked but he had his start in your country Malaysia. At 20 he went to Singapore to work for Wearne Brothers which was an Australian owned company dealing in automobiles, truck and heavy equipment and he set up Wearne Brothers in Malaysia. He was a great car racer and Straits Times sponsored him in the Macau Grand Prix in 1958. He built his racing car which he named Wyllie Special. He lived in Kuala Lumpur and Johore for several years as well as Singapore and always told me he had the time of his life in Malaysia as he was young and on his way up."
We chatted happily but she had to leave early. "My mother is going to hospital tomorrow so I have to be with her." She kissed me which was yet another honour! Two honours in one night! I had to grab another glass of Bunkers champagne to calm my nerves.
And so concluded the BEST fashion week of my life! Hope Perth Fashion Festival remembers me next year as I am compiling my wardrobe soon.